Lens Adapting & Modification

Ilford Advocate Lens – Bodge Mounted By The Geniuses at WYC

Ages ago, the guys at West Yorkshire Cameras posted a picture of a lens they “cobbled” together on Instagram. Apparently, behind the scenes they had joked about the fact that I would probably see it, likely be interested, and would even possibly get in touch with them about having a go with it. Seems I took the bait.

Not long later, I had this unusual contraption in my possession.

PPP 35M Color-Minotar 35mm f2.8 Review

Recently, the lens market has seen a new fresh offering for us, vintage lenses enthusiastic people. Some workshops, like PPP, Omnar, MS Optics has been offering the possibility to shoot old lenses previously only available on some point and shoot cameras by converting them to the M-mount. By doing so, it is now possible to get these old vintage vibes on various, more serious cameras, from film M mount cameras to digital with various mirrorless brands.

Fuji 100mm F3.5 AE Lens (6X9) adapted to Pentax (35mm)

It is a lens designed for medium format cameras (6×7 and 6×9) of the Fuji brand, which began to be marketed in 1974. It has a classic Tessar optical design, that is, 4 elements in 3 groups, which results in a high contrast due to low number of elements. At full aperture you get gorgeous bokeh in the out-of-focus areas, and at other apertures (especially between F8 and F11) it’s fabulously sharp in the center.

Featured image of the finished lens conversion

Lens Conversion – Nikon AF600 to LTM/L39 with a ‘Rod’s Gear’ Housing – By Andreas Mass

When I was looking for a potential lens or rather a nice broken camera to retrieve a good lens from I stumbled on some articles here covering the Nikon AF600 (also known as Lite Touch). In fact I reached out to Hamish after finishing this little project to thank him for the site and the articles that featured the camera. He then asked me if I would be interested in sharing this project on the site… so here we are.

Air-Gap Meniscus Camera

That Time I Built an “Air-Gap Meniscus” Lens – By Dave Powell

Long ago, I tried to shoot landscapes using a macro-close-up filter as a lens. I taped the filter to the front of two nested cardboard “focusing tubes” and attached them to my Fuji X-Pro1’s lens mount. I did get images, but wasn’t impressed. Though fairly sharp in the center, they blurred massively toward the perimeter. And the cardboard tubes didn’t slide easily enough for fine focusing. So I dropped the idea.

Until last week, when I stumbled across an old forum about removing (and even chiseling) “meniscus” lenses from vintage folders and plastic-fantastics to mount on medium- and large-format cameras. The photographers reported decent results.

It got me thinking (always dangerous). My original macro-close-up “lens” was meniscus-shaped– concave on the back and a little more convex on the front– but it was also proportionately thinner than most of the meniscus lenses in vintage cameras. So what would happen if I simulated a thicker meniscus by screwing one close-up filter onto another?

If the combination proved to be a decent lens, it might also address a problem reported in the old forum. Most of the meniscus lenses harvested from 35mm and medium-format cameras had fairly small diameters… which made them “slow” for large-format shooting. My 55mm macro-close-up filters would be comparatively huge, and produce a faster lens.

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